KENNEWICK -- It's a simple fact of life now for the Southridge girls soccer team.
Any opponent facing the top-ranked Suns has a shot at greatness, at least for one day.
"We've built a winning tradition at Southridge, and we know we're going to get everybody's best game," Suns coach Greg Sambrano said after watching his team edge CBBN 3A rival Kamiakin 2-1 on Saturday at Southridge High School. "In our league, if you don't come to play every game, you're going to get knocked off by somebody.
"The nice thing is you're going to get 10 games of competitive soccer."
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The Suns (9-0, 7-0 CBBN 3A) kept their hold on first place, gaining a game on the Braves (6-3, 5-2), who are tied with West Valley (7-2, 5-2) for second place in league.
Kamiakin came out fired up, forcing its way into Southridge's back third for a handful of solid chances in the first 25 minutes. Eight minutes into the game, Braves forward Ellie Heiden pushed the ball up the right hash and passed to Kyra Brannan inside the Suns' 18-yard box.
The defense caught up to Brannan, but she found a way to tap it to Taylor Schutzenhofer for a clean shot on goal. The senior midfielder, usually a defender, beat Southridge goalkeeper Ingrid Stein with a shot to the left corner for a 1-0 lead.
"It's dangerous to get a goal that early. We stayed in the game really well in the first half, but they did a good job stopping our attack," said Kamiakin coach Chris Erikson.
Sambrano wasn't happy with his team's slow start, but he was pleased when the Suns equalized in the 33rd minute.
"I don't think we came out particularly strong. I'm not sure why we came out so sluggish," he said. "One of this team's strengths is its ability to come back."
Following a corner kick by Randi Andreatta, Katherine Tsoukalas hustled to chase down an errant header to the left of the Kamiakin net and chipped it back to the front of the goal. Senior midfielder Hannah Sanders was in position to head it past Braves keeper Sydney Grant and into the net for her fourth goal this year.
"I saw Kat turning around to cross it," Sanders said. "I was in shock that I tied the game."
The Suns came out for the second half looking a little more organized and quickly began pressuring on Kamiakin's end. Heather Johnson, the returning 3A player of the year, crossed the ball in to Brooke Benecke for a shot in the fifth minute and missed wide left on an attempt of her own a minute later.
In the 54th minute, Johnson took a pass from Andreatta at midfield and dribbled down the left hash. With a mere step on her defender, Johnson took the ball just inside the 18 and calmly lined a left-footed shot over Grant and into the right corner for the go-ahead goal.
"I think we caught the defense off guard," said Johnson of her 17th goal of the year and 87th of her high school career. "It's definitely exciting, especially playing at home against a cross-town rival."
Scoring--1, K, Taylor Schutzenhofer (Kyra Brannan), 8:00; 2, SR, Hannah Sanders (Katherine Tsoukalas), 33:00; 3, SR, Heather Johnson (Randi Andreatta), 54:00. Shots--K 11, SR 12. Saves--K, Sydney Grant 5. SR, Ingrid Stein 4.
Richland 2, Chiawana 1
Katherine Virden scored the game-tying goal and, nine minutes later, assisted on the eventual game-winnner to Yesenia Alvarado, lifting Richland to a CBBN 4A home victory over Chiawana.
Lexi Miller got loose in the 30th minute, scoring on a shot from outside the 18-yard box for a 1-0 Riverhawks lead.
"Lexi has been scoring for them, and I knew we needed to watch out for her. Wouldn't you know the one I told them to watch was the one who scored," said Bombers coach Sara Elfering, who did her best to fire up her team at the half. "I wasn't particularly pleased with the first half. I thought we still had the run of play, but we just weren't finishing."
Virden converted a 35-yard free kick in the 41st minute, rocketing a shot past Shelby English and into the back of the net.
"The girls felt pretty good about tying it up," Elfering said. "(Virden) has some really nice set pieces, and she always takes our corners."
Sure enough, Virden's corner kick in the 50th minute found Alvarado for the go-ahead goal.
Miller nearly tied it up at 2 with just five minutes remaining, but Richland keeper Shelby Long made a highlight-reel save to preserve the win.
Scoring--1, C, Lexi Miller, 30:00; 2, R, Katherine Virden, 41:00; 3, R, Yesenia Alvarado (Virden), 50:00. Shots--C 3, R 8. Saves--C, Shelby English 5. R, Shelby Long 2.
Walla Walla 2, Eisenhower 0
Paige Pontarollo scored twice for Walla Walla in a CBBN 4A game against Eisenhower at Marquette Stadium.
Scoring--1, WW, Paige Pontarollo 60:00; 2, WW, Pontarollo (Maggie Callan) 69:00. Saves--WW, Alexis Sanchez 0. Ike, Ralynn Kelly 2.
Davis 2, Moses Lake 1 (OT)
Vanessa McNair scored on an Elizabeth McGraw assist in the 28th minute but Moses Lake still fell in a CBBN 4A game against Davis in Yakima.
Scoring--1, ML, Vanessa McNair (Elizabeth McGraw) 28:00; 2, D, Aimee Silva (Izzy Badillo) 60:00; 3, D, Badillo (Silva) 82:00. Saves--ML, 2. D, Teresa Salzar 1.
West Valley 5, Pasco 0
Pasco's Carrie Nolan had five saves on the day but West Valley's assault proved too much as the visiting Bulldogs fell to the Rams in a CBBN 3A contest.
Scoring--1, WV, Kelsey Dolquist (Jaden Gjestrum) 12:00; 2, WV, Courtney Buchanan 19:00; 3, WV, Sandy Hanses 43:00; 4, WV, Hanses (Sadee Kallis) 54:00; 5, WV, Gjestrum (Alison Alderman) 63:00 Shots--P, 4. WV, 10. Saves--P, Carrie Nolan 5. WV, Ros Pratt 1, Stephanie Gibson 1.
Sunnyside 2, Kennewick 0
Sunnyside won its first CBBN 3A match of the season as Ana Perez and Daisy Rodriguez each scored a goal in a home win over Kennewick.
Scoring--1, S, Ana Perez, 5:00. 2, S, Daisy Rodriguez, 25:00. Shots--K 4, S 32. Saves--K, 18. S, Liz Escobar 4.
Ellensburg 2, Grandview 0
Jamila Shafer had six saves on the day for Grandview but visiting Ellensburg still pulled a victory out of the CWAC 2A hat.
"Tough game, in the fact that it was close," said Greyhounds coach Anne Holden, who also noted her team rattled a shot off the crossbar. "Both teams had a lot of chances, but Ellensburg, actually, showed a lot more consistency in finishing."
Scoring--1, Ell, Trew Tucker 12:00; 2, Ell, Hannah Hugo 72:00. Shots--Ell 8, GV 6. Saves--Ell, Sammy Bell-Ruelas 6. GV, Jamila Shafer 6.
Ki-Be 6, Cle Elum 0
Taylor Brown scored twice, including a goal in the 51st minute on an assist from her sister Shaylee Brown as Kiona-Benton earned an SCAC 1A home win over Cle Elum.
Scoring--1, KB, Taylor Haughton 20:00; 2, KB, Taylor Brown (Mykenzie Lilly) 32:00; 3, KB, Kayla Gifford 48:00; 4, KB, Brown (Shaylee Brown) 51:00; 5, KB, Kiley Smith (Haughton) 68:00; 6, KB, Daisy Metcalf 73:00. Shots--CE 1, KB 25. Saves--CE, Tasha Mosley 10. KB, Blake Hirschi 1, Vanessa Gonzalez.
Royal 1, Goldendale 0 (SO)
Gladys Meza converted two shots during a 17-round shootout, lifting Royal to an SCAC victory over Goldendale.
Shootout goals (Royal 9-8)--Goldendale, A.Keffeller, S.Lemley, R.Johnson, C.Smith, E.Kelsey, S.Ross, Z.Jagelski, S.Gray, . Royal, Gladys Meza, Maria Garcia, Brianda Cardenas, Jatender Veenstra, Flor Araujo, Samantha Cera, Danielle Ledezma, Meza, Angie De La Rosa.